Cargill said the investment will enable it to expand its capacity in the UK

Cargill said the investment will enable it to expand its capacity in the UK

Agribusiness giant Cargill is to invest GBP35m (US$56.3m) in its UK poultry processing facility in Hereford in a bid to strengthen its position in the country.

The investment, which will be phased over a three-year period, will see the firm improve efficiencies and upgrade technologies, creating a state-of-the-art facility. Cargill said the investment will enable it to expand its capacity to process and supply fresh UK reared chicken.

"This is an exciting time for the poultry industry and as demand for fresh chicken grown in the UK continues to rise amongst retailers and consumers, we aim to position ourselves to better support this," said Pilar Cruz, MD for Cargill Meats Europe. "This investment will position Cargill for future growth and strengthen our relationship with key strategic customers in the UK."

Whilst the upgrades are underway, Cruz said Cargill will be working with local UK chicken farmers to look at "how to continue to build a sustainable and long term chicken supply chain" while increasing the number of home grown chickens available to the UK market. 

"Cargill's investment plans will not only help us support our customers but also local farmers and the industry as a whole. We are committed to working together with our farmers, customers, suppliers and communities to help the UK poultry industry to thrive and to leverage our broad global knowledge, ethics and values to build a strong sustainable growth business in the UK."

Once the investment plans are complete, Cargill said it will be operating "one of the most efficient and competitive poultry processing plants in Europe".